Words Of Truth

"That I might make thee know the certainty of the words of truth..." (Proverbs 22:21).



An Overview Of The Old Testament

Part 210 – Casting Bread Upon Water Through Vanity Of Youth (Ecclesiastes 11:1-10)

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1. Could one plant in water and find results later?

Yes: “Cast thy bread [Strong’s # 3899; bread; grain] upon the waters: for thou shalt find it after many days” (Ecclesiastes 11:1).


Š     This verse could mean to plant in waters than are risen so that the seed will take root once those waters recede.  Certainly, planting near water is wise (Isaiah 32:20).

Š     Consider: “For as the rain cometh down, and the snow from heaven, and returneth not thither, but watereth the earth, and maketh it bring forth and bud, that it may give seed to the sower, and bread to the eater” (Isaiah 55:10).


2. Should we help others in preparations for bad times that may come?

Yes: “Give a portion to seven, and also to eight; for thou knowest not what evil [Strong’s # 7451; “bad, adversity, great grief, misery] shall be upon the earth” (Ecclesiastes 11:2).


Š     The specific application to this verse is here: Acts 11:27-30.

Š     For one, we should never help someone be a bum (II Thessalonians 3:10).

Š     That being said, we should be benevolent people (Acts 2:44-45, Acts 4:34, I Timothy 6:17-19, and Hebrews 13:3).


3. Can we expect that things such as rain and fallen trees are sure to happen?

Yes: “If the clouds be full of rain, they empty themselves upon the earth: and if the tree fall toward the south, or toward the north, in the place where the tree falleth, there it shall be” (Ecclesiastes 11:3).


Š     Natural events won’t be stopped from occurring.  This includes things like heavy rains (Ezra 10:9-13).

Š     Seasons will continue to occur upon the earth (Genesis 8:21-22).


4. If one spends his time watching for signs of things to come, will he ever accomplish any work?

No: “He that observeth the wind shall not sow; and he that regardeth the clouds shall not reap” (Ecclesiastes 11:4).


Š     Proverbs 20:4.

Š     People are too concerned about what they cannot control (Isaiah 47:13; cf. Matthew 6:24-34).

Š     Never allow potential things like weather to keep you from what you HAVE to do (Proverbs 27:1 and James 4:13-16).



5. Will man ever be able to figure out everything about God?

No: “As thou knowest not what is the way of the spirit, nor how the bones do grow in the womb of her that is with child: even so thou knowest not the works of God who maketh all” (Ecclesiastes 11:5).


Š     What do we really KNOW about a child in the womb (Psalms 139:13-15)?

Š     Can we really, fully, explain “the way of the spirit” (John 3:8)?

Š     We cannot know all the works of God (Job 5:9, Job 37:23, Psalms 92:5, Ecclesiastes 8:17, and Romans 11:33-36).


6. Can we always know what is going to work out for good or not?

No, so the point this verse will make is don’t just sow seeds at one point in time and expect that to work: “In the morning sow thy seed, and in the evening withhold not thine hand: for thou knowest not whether shall prosper, either this or that, or whether they both shall be alike good” (Ecclesiastes 11:6).


Š     Put your head down and work (Ecclesiastes 9:10, Ephesians 4:28, I Thessalonians 4:11-12, and I Timothy 5:8) rather than trying to figure out a way to pick the “right time”.

Š     Some people think too much without acting (James 1:8).


7. While we can enjoy good times what do we also need to be aware of?

Dark days can be coming: “(7) Truly the light is sweet, and a pleasant thing it is for the eyes to behold the sun: (8) But if a man live many years, and rejoice in them all; yet let him remember the days of darkness; for they shall be many. All that cometh is vanity” (Ecclesiastes 11:7-8).


Š     We can consider the good days (Ecclesiastes 12:1).

Š     We also have to consider the bad ones past and consider what could come (Deuteronomy 32:21-29, Ecclesiastes 4:1, Ecclesiastes 7:14, etc.).

Š     We live in an evil world (Galatians 1:4 and I John 5:19) and need to realize what that brings about (Ecclesiastes 9:18, Matthew 7:18, and Ephesians 2:2-3).


8. Should young folks remember that God does not overlook their works?

Sow thy wild oats in youth is a misnomer: “Rejoice, O young man, in thy youth; and let thy heart cheer thee in the days of thy youth, and walk in the ways of thine heart, and in the sight of thine eyes: but know thou, that for all these things God will bring thee into judgment” (Ecclesiastes 11:9).


Š     Go ahead and have your fun, but don’t think you’ll get away with it (Ecclesiastes 3:17, Ecclesiastes 12:13-14, John 5:28-29, Acts 17:30, Romans 2:5-11, and I Peter 4:17-19).


9. Would young people be wise to free themselves from things which cause injury to them physically and spiritually?

Yes, for youth vanity and therefore not the deliver from the effects of such things: “Therefore remove sorrow [Strong’s #3708; anger; grief; provocation] from thy heart, and put away evil from thy flesh: for childhood and youth are vanity” (Ecclesiastes 11:10).


Š     Remove anger; wrath, etc. (Psalms 37:8, Proverbs 12:16, Proverbs 27:3, Ecclesiastes 7:9, and Colossians 3:8).

Š     Put away evil (I Thessalonians 5:22).

Š     Youthful lusts are not beneficial (II Timothy 2:22).




Index Of Old Testament Studies


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